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View Diary: Holy Fact Check, Batman! McClatchy Drops a Bomb (198 comments)

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  •  This is an excellent piece (19+ / 0-)

    I take some pride of ownership, since I've repeatedly commented and wrote a diary about McClatchy/KR. (

    In addition to Downing Street, they:

    • got the WMD story right from the start, ignoring Judith Miller's misinformation;
    • broke the story of the Presidential whispers (the "signing statements")
    • published one of the few factual assessments of Alito's conservatism, prompting a backlash which they boldly stood up against; and
    • got the story of the recent Chilean elections right, ignoring the line in other papers about how the left had never won the Parliament before (the left had won every free Parliamentary election, but Pinochet put his finger in the scale when he wrote the Constitution, allotting 20 permanent seats to his allies. Only in the most recent election did the left overcome this and rewrite the Constitution.)

    I just want to remind people to bookmark their Washington bureau and use it as one of your primary news sources.  They don't have the deep pockets of the Times and Post, the WSJ and the abominations of tv, so they cover fewer stories.  But the ones they cover, they almost always get right:

    •  a very good link (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      azale, pat bunny, jfdunphy

      I just want to remind people to bookmark their Washington bureau and use it as one of your primary news sources.  They don't have the deep pockets of the Times and Post, the WSJ and the abominations of tv, so they cover fewer stories.  But the ones they cover, they almost always get right:

      Thanks for that.  It looks like a news source I have been missing.  And the blog there is really something. I just read Iraq way to begin the day in the Iraq Blog where an Iraqi single mother working for an American news agency tells of recently finding a very disturbing message on her phone

      I came to the office, and found this message in my phone saying "we are Kata’eb al Jehad, we know you, and we are watching you" isn’t that exciting!!! To get threat from unknown side whether al Jehad battalion or others!

      First person writing like that puts the daily news about now "yesterday there were X bodies showing signs of torture found in the Y neighborhood of Baghdad" into a more personal context. 

      All this talk about how we need to "redeploy" -- and there is no way around it -- often overlooks that there will be a lot of Iraqis who will also need to do so when that happens.  There are also Iraqis who need to redeploy right now because their "cover" has been blown and their association with western institutions has been discovered.  Unfortunately there is little provision for this under our existing system. 

      •  NYT Now Reporting Iraqi's Don't Like Bush's Plan (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fred in Vermont, jfdunphy


        First among these is a Shiite-led government that has been so dogmatic in its attitude that the Americans worry that they will be frustrated in their aim of cracking down equally on Shiite and Sunni extremists, a strategy that President Bush has declared central to the plan.

        Bush put a government in place in Iraq that is more aligned with Iran than the U.S.

        The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. Dwight Eisenhower, 1961

        by R2 on Sun Jan 14, 2007 at 07:59:22 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Its Hard Work (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CathiefromCanada, azale, R2, kimoconnor

          described a web of problems, ranging from a contested chain of command to issues of how to protect American troops deployed in some of Baghdad’s most dangerous districts

          I too am wondering about how this surge in Baghdad is supposed to work.  The picture I get is that al Maliki vetoed the Iraqi general that the Americans wanted to be in overall charge and appointed his own choice, a Shia.  As to the troops it seems that 2/3 of them will be Kurds brought in from Kurdistan.  The American troops will be "embedded" in those Iraqi units and stationed (and quartered?) in various Iraqi police stations.

          So just consider this situation.  You don't speak Arabic or Kurdish and you are moving into a police station in Sadr City with a bunch of Kurds.  The police are in large part Mahdi Army folks and the Kurds are really Peshmerga.  Your chain of command is split between your officers, the Kurdish officers and the overall Shia commander of  Baghdad.  Day to day you will be dependent upon the protection and guidance of the local police as you venture out to try too "clear" a neighborhood where everyone but you knows and supports the local Mahdi Army people because they are the military wing of the al Sadr organization which provides the only real social services in the area.

          So once you get settled in for a few days it will be time to organize some sort of move against the Mahdi army which will by then have hidden most of their arms and be nowhere and everywhere and who will know where you are going before you do.  And the "local" forces with  you will be people of a different race and sect from the locals and viewed as virtual untermenschen by the Sadr City natives while you yourself will be seen as a Minion of the Great Satan and be described that way in vivid terms each Friday at all the local Mosques

          So yes force protection and chain of command are issues I would say.  I hope that this new general really does know what his is doing. I can't believe he has really signed on to lead such an effort at this stage of the situations development.

      •  You may wish to check... (9+ / 0-)

        the Iraq War Coverage where we also post a Daily Violence report, also by our Iraqi staffers.

        For example: Roundup of violence in Iraq - 14 January

        ...Today 40 bodies were found in Baghdad, some tortured and handcuffed: 5 were found in al adhamiyah, 2 aour, 2 new Baghdad, 1 zayuona, 1 rashad, 1 selekh, 2 sadr city , 2 mansour, 1 khadhra, 2 near Haifa street, 2 belat al shuhadaa, 7 in different places in shula, 4 kadhumiyah, 4 ghazaliyah, 1 dora, 2 amil and 1 bayaa . ...

        •  thanks (0+ / 0-)

          we also post a Daily Violence report

          I will mark that too.  It seems like most of the time only Juan Cole has that sort of news, but not broken down like that.  It seems strange that this sort of stuff does not even reach anyone most of the time.

          I have the site on my links bar.


        •  thanks (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Thanks for posting this. From where I sit, your Washington Bureau has been doing the work of angels for years. I'm proud to say I spent a couple years working for a Knight Ridder paper. I wasn't a reporter but was still mighty proud when one of our guys won a Pulitzer reporting some stuff people did NOT want to hear. Journalism at it's finest.

          Keep up the good work.

    •  They Used Real Sources Vs. Political Appointees (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Randall Sherman

      The former Washington Bureau of Knight-Ridder were amazing in getting the Iraq story correct from the very beginning.  Go back and read their stories from 2002 and 2003 about Iraq - everything turned out to be true and no other Mainstream Source was reporting it.

      One of their writers explained how they found the truth.  The other major newspapers (such as NYTimes) were reliant upon high level political appointees who were promising them the inside scoop.  Those appointees didn't provide much access to Knight-Ridder reporters because they weren't media stars.  So Knight-Ridder reporters had to talk to the mid-level career civil service and military people who actually knew what was going on, and who had no ideological agenda.

      Unfortunately, no enough people paid attention to their excellent work, and the Truth did not set up free.

      JPZenger was a newspaper publisher whose trial for libel established the principle that the Truth is the ultimate defense.

      by JPZenger on Mon Jan 15, 2007 at 07:17:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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